5 steps to upgrade your bedroom for better sleep right now


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When it comes to getting a solid night’s sleep, you have many tricks up your sleeve. You (try to) stop watching TV an hour before bed, have all of the calming tea, and might even dabble in essential oils (at least your diffuser doubles as table art).

But if you’re still not getting superior sleep, it might not be what you’re doing—but where you’re doing it. Yep, we’re talking about your bedroom. The design of the most important room in your home (they don’t call the bedroom your sanctuary for nothing) can actually affect the quality of your shut-eye.

“Sleep is a performance activity,” says Michael J. Breus, PhD, a clinical pyschologist who’s also known as The Sleep Doctor. “if you have the right equipment you will do it better. Natural talent gets you only so far, and then it’s about the gear.”

“Sleep is a performance activity. Natural talent gets you only so far, and then it’s about the gear.”

He actually compares the art of sleeping to exercise (so maybe it’s time to start getting as serious about your zzz’s as you are about mastering that yoga pose). But how do you know if the gear in your room will give you sweet dreams? Dr. Breus says to just look around and take inventory of your space. “Ask yourself if it’s a place of calmness and tranquility,” he advises. “Or is it a mosh pit of stress and dirty laundry?” 

Luckily, your bedroom redo won’t require you to start from scratch or even enlist the help of a pricey interior designer. These expert-approved swaps might feel small, but they’ll make the biggest difference in your restful rituals. Better sleep and a new room? It’s a win-win situation.

Keep reading for five simple bedroom swaps and tips that’ll make you sleep easy each night.

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Your mattress matters

According to Dr. Breus, the items in your bedroom that will affect your sleep the most are your mattress and pillows. “A good pillow and mattress go a long way with sleep,” he says. So if you’ve been laying your head on the same one since college, it might be time for an upgrade.

Spring mattresses with a top foam layer offer you the best of both worlds: They’re sink-right-in comfy on top, but also supportive enough with the spring structure to provide you that firmness (with a bit of bounce). 

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Your sheets need a cool factor

“When it comes to bedding, it’s all about temperature control,” Dr. Breus says. “You will always sleep better in the cooler temp.” And no, that doesn’t mean turning off the thermostat at bedtime—but opting for breathable bedding like cotton or dreamy linen (which is also insanely Instagrammable).

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Ikea bedroom light

Let there be (some) light…

Being exposed to bright lights has the potential to keep you up longer at night (experts say the blue light many bulbs emit can suppress your body’s natural production of melatonin—AKA the sleep hormone), so it’s a good idea to employ some smart lighting into your room.

IKEA’s dimming kit, for example, allows you to switch to and from cold and warm light, so you can ease into softer lighting as your bedtime approaches. Plus, since you can dim and turn off the lights with a remote control (and even voice assistant), you don’t have to  jump out of bed to darken your room when you’re done reading. 

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…but also let there be NO light

Experts says your body rests better in complete darkness (hence why you strive to stay away from the TV), and blackout curtains can help you get there. The window treatments are usually a splurge, but the options from IKEA—everything from rich, velvety curtains to blackout blinds—are budget-friendly and add tonal and textural accents to your overall design. Nope: The thought of overspending doesn’t have to keep you up at night.

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Send your phone to sleep, too

You’ve probably been told it’s not wise to sleep next to your phone, but that’s all too easy to ignore. “It gives off radiation when charging so it’s not so great to have it near your head,” Dr. Breus says. “Plus, you do not need the distraction before bed or in the middle of the night.”

Dr. Breus recommends charging your phone in another room. But if just reading that gives you separation  anxiety, simply store it away from your bed. IKEA’s RIGGAD work lamp includes a wireless charging feature, so you can keep it on your desk or dresser and grab it on your way out in the a.m. fully charged.

Plus, you’ll be shocked how streamlined it will feel to keep it simple with just a good book and a glass of water on your night stand. No more anxiety-causing clutter: Just a gorgeous minimalist Instagram pic waiting to happen. 

In partnership with IKEA

Photos: IKEA

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